Yankees GM Brian Cashman spoke with the media this morning regarding the health uncertainty surrounding star sluggers Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton. He also disputed recent reporting regarding the team’s efforts to shore up an injury-depleted rotation mix. MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch was among those to cover the news (links to Twitter).
First and foremost, it now seems abundantly clear — if it wasn’t already — that the Yanks will go without their twin right-handed power towers for some time to open the season. Cashman didn’t say so expressly regarding Judge, but that’s evident in the fact that he’s still undergoing testing. Judge is said to be “responding well” to the treatment he has received, but his timeline remains uncertain.
As for Stanton, Cashman said plainly that it’s “unrealistic” to expect him to be in the Opening Day lineup. But the top New York baseball ops exec did say he believes the outfielder/DH can make it back to the majors during the month of April. Stanton is rehabbing a calf injury. It doesn’t seem to be a major malady but the team is understandably handling it with care after a 2019 season that was plagued by injuries (for both Stanton and the team).
The hope presumably remains that both of those players will end up being available for most of the coming season. But the Yanks have already endured some major blows to their pitching plans — especially, the loss of Luis Severino for the entire campaign.
The club has given public indication that it’s focused on its internal options. But it stands to reason that the organization will at least look for way to add depth. And there has been some suggestion that the Yankees might attempt to add a rotation piece via trade. MLBTR’s Connor Byrne recently examined a few hypothetical possibilities. Just yesterday, we saw reports of interest in Mets lefty Steven Matz.
Cashman squashed any hope of a surprising mid-spring, cross-town Matz swap — or any other near-term trade. “We have not talked to anybody,” the GM said of trade chatter involving the rotation. That obviously doesn’t rule out future conversations, but it seems at a minimum that the Yankees staff won’t feature any prominent new members in the coming days.